A child’s positive experience at Levine Children’s Hospital compelled his family to give back generously to enhance emergency transport services offered by Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Children’s Hospital. Carolinas HealthCare Foundation was honored to announce today a $348,900 gift from the Elsie & Marvin Dekelboum Family Foundation to fund a new pediatric ambulance.

Michael and Kelly Hughes and Levine Children’s Hospital gathered to dedicate the new critical care ambulance, the second of its kind in MedCenter Air’s ground fleet that is dedicated to neonatal transport.

IMG_3128 (002)“We were so grateful for the care our son William received in the Emergency Department at Levine Children’s Hospital last year,” said his mother, Kelly Hughes, who rushed her five-year-old to the hospital after he fell off his scooter and hit his head. “It’s amazing to think that just days after he was wheeled into the emergency room with a head trauma, William walked out of Levine Children’s Hospital.”

Feeling fortunate after their ordeal, Kelly and Michael reached out to Michael’s grandparents’ family foundation when she learned of the emergency department’s need for a new ambulance. Today, that ambulance is ready to roll, thanks to support from the Elsie & Marvin Dekelboum Family Foundation.

The new vehicle differs vastly from adult ambulances, offering unique features, such as: a refrigerator to transport mother’s breast milk and vital medications; a specialized HVAC system to meet the critical needs of transporting neonates; a built-in iPad for diversion and distraction therapies as well as the ability to have real-time communication with hospital and physicians awaiting patient’s arrival; additional space for family members to travel; a backup generator; and a unique layout to properly secure a stretcher, bed or neonatal isolette.

IMG_3125 (002)Thanks to one child’s experience, and the generosity of the Elsie & Marvin Dekelboum Family Foundation, thousands of local children will benefit from timely and specialized care during pediatric medical emergencies.